Jeremy Plays Guitar
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Jeremy Plays Guitar

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE
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Jeremy Zmuda is the lead singer for Jeremy Plays Guitar, which plays pop, country, jazz, and rock music for kids.Last September, the group released Use Your Words, an award-winning album filled with catchy, educational tunes.Songs from the album help kids express themselves in a variety of social situations. The tune “Your Turn, My Turn” teaches kids how to share, while “Wrong’s Alright” helps kids to learn from mistakes.

Zmuda started off playing gigs for adults in the United States and Eastern Europe. He also taught music to kids, but soon tired of singing them “Itsy Bitsy Little Spider” and “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.” So he started writing his own children’s songs.

In 2009, he teamed up with Lizzie Bicknell, who had a background in early childhood development, and they wrote songs for the Use Your Words album.

“We sensed there was a real need for that kind of children’s music,” said Zmuda.

It’s also a lot of fun, he added. “After the first note, tons of kids [are] dancing, jumping, singing along to the words.” - CNN-Money


This awesome educational “language-based music” will not only teach your kid to use his words, it’ll get him to boogie down too! There are valuable life lessons snuck into the jammin’ tunes including taking turns, recognizing feelings, following house rules and more! - NICKELODEON PARENTS CONNECT


They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but I think music can communicate those words better. (Of course, I am a little biased!) Nagging your kids gets old, but if you can sing them a familiar song that shares your thoughts and you can do it with a smile and wink and/or a twinkle in your eye…will they listen better? Perhaps. It is worth a try!

If you are a parent, teacher or therapist, you NEED this CD in your toolbox…er, CD player. “Use Your Words” by Jeremy Plays Guitar is the representation of songs I have written in my head both for my children and for children I worked with when I wore the title “Music Therapist”. The songs on this CD meet needs. They talk about things that kids struggle with and offer solutions in the lyrics. It makes rules fun and easy to remember. It says things in a manner that kids can not only relate to, but understand. It communicates without a negative tone of voice, a sigh of frustration or a judgmental attitude…all things that we sometimes inadvertently tack on to our remonstrations and words of guidance when we are working with kids.

If you have a child…

* who can not remember the rules,
* who struggles to sit still,
* who can not communicate needs appropriately,
* who can’t eat certain foods,
* who can’t share,
* who aren’t the same as everyone else,
* who are a little clumsy or do embarrassing things,
* who are shy,
* who are overwhelmed by loud noises,
* who do not transition well,
* who lose their temper or
* who are unsure about expressing their emotions or reading those of others …

Then, you will be able to find a song on “Use Your Words” that you NEED!

The only barrier I foresee is that the songs really are not age appropriate for teens and adults who also struggle with these things! (That might be because the CD was aimed at kids ages 2-6.)

I cannot stop telling people about “Use Your Words.” I will be purchasing several copies of it to share with friends, family and other music therapists. It is definitely a must have! - Nation Of Moms


Taking turns, making mistakes, getting nervous, obeying rules, being different,and communicating.

Designed specifically for children two through six years old, the songs give voice
to the confusion some children face at times when they experience changes or
new ideas and activities.
The songs on Use Your Words are described as “‘language-based music,’
giving children the words to use to communicate their feelings and to handle
everyday social situations.” “I Meant to Do That,” performed by guest “Captain”
Kirk Douglas of The Roots, addresses that goofy feeling we all get when we do
something embarrassing.
Some of the songs deal with very specific problems that bedevil children (and
adults) –hyperactivity, food allergies, loud noises — and how to cope with
them. Songs like “That Hurts My Ears” and “Keep My Cool” offer advice on what
to say when things are unpleasant.
Use Your Words also teaches respects for differences; “Differently” catalogues
many of the things that some people love and others hate, while “That Food
Makes Me Sick” is not only about allergies but also about different tastes (e.g.,
some people eat meat, others don’t).
Other songs on the CD are “House Rules” (which is a litany of common safety
and family rules with explanations), “Wrong’s Alright,” “Your Turn, My Turn,” “Use
Your Words” (to express yourself instead of whining), “You’ll Be Fine,” “Jump So
High,” “Say Hello,” “Let Me Know,” and “HappySadSillyMad.” Members of Jeremy
Plays Guitar are Jeremy Zmuda on vocals and guitars, Joy Dragland (vocals),
Leo Sidran (drums, vocals, percussion, keys), Rich Stein (percussion), and Alan
Hampton (bass).
Use Your Words is a family-friendly, cheerful collection of songs that teaches
children how to express themselves and get along with others — without
preaching. It’s lots of fun.
Bottom Line: Would I buy Use Your Words? Yes, it would make an excellent gift
for families with preschoolers or kids in lower grades. - Blog Critics


Released September 28, 2010, New York City musician Jeremy Zmuda’s, Use Your Words, is a unique “language based music” album that features lyrics developed by early childhood specialists. Use Your Words offers a mixture of musical genres including pop, country, folk, Jazz and rock to ease in subtle messages that highlight children’s feelings in everyday social encounters. Joined on the album are musical artists Madeleine Peyroux, Kirk Douglas (The Roots), Joy Dragland and Leo Sidran. The 14 original songs, for children ages two through six may be sound sampled at Zmuda’s website, and where you will also learn more about Zmuda’s unique qualifications for this album, check out his upcoming live performances, download song lyrics and purchase the CD at the suggested retail price of $13.99. Use Your Words is also available through online retailers Amazon.com and Best Buy. - National Children's Entertainment


Jeremy Plays Guitar, led by Jeremy Zmuda and a talented group of vocalists and musicians, address some of the many challenges that young children face today. The 14 original songs written by Zmuda and Lizzie Bicknell, a former early intervention program administrator, are intended to help children communicate their feelings and deal with everyday social situations. Among the topics covered are food allergies (“That Food Makes Me Sick”), trying to stay cool when you’re upset (“Keep My Cool”), and what to do if you are sound sensitive (“That Hurts My Ears). Also included are songs that tackle sharing, being nervous or scared, making mistakes, and more. The over-arching theme of the album is coping—teaching children how to use their words, manage their feelings, and enjoy life. In the hands of Jeremy Plays Guitar these tunes, ranging from rock and roll to bluesy jazz, are fresh and fun to listen to. A good resource to use one-on-one or in a classroom setting.
- Library School Journal


“Use Your Words” (Freeze Dance Records; $15) Early childhood specialists Jeremy Zmuda and Elizabeth Bicknell (aka Jeremy Plays Guitar) offer “language-based music,” a collection of songs in the musical styles of jazz, pop, country-folk that gives kids the words to communicate their feelings and handle every day social situations. - LA Daily News


Family shows are just as fun as the concerts you may remember from your pre-parenting days but the music isn’t as loud, the settings are sometimes more intimate with the children nestled around the performer and there is nothing cuter than watching the kids get up and groove to the music. Jeremy Plays Guitar:?Rock out with Jeremy and the gang as the children’s educator and guitar player, Jeremy, gives kids permission to jump and play while catching tunes at this fun live show. - Mommy Poppins


A catchy album that promotes language arts? Sign us up! Jeremy Plays Guitar’s latest offering, Use Your Words, features kid-friendly songs in every genre (pop, country, jazz, rock) geared to help kids learn to communicate well for every situation. - People Magazine


If you like radio friendly rock, you’ll like Jeremy Plays Guitar’s “Use Your Words”. Singer Jeremy Zmuda’s pop/rock confections tell playful tales about the facts of wee lives (sharing, lunch food, house rules). Bonus: Guest vocals by Kirk Douglas from The Roots and Madeleine Peyroux. - Daily Candy


Discography

• End Of An Era (2007)
• Songs in the Key of New York (2008)
• Use Your Words (September 28, 2010)

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Bio

Just when you thought nothing new was happening in the indie family music scene, you are rocked by Jeremy Plays Guitar! Combining rock, pop and jazz music with kid-inspired lyrics, Jeremy Plays Guitar has created an innovative and fun way to reach kids through music. Who says an inspired groove can’t also help kids learn? Not Jeremy Zmuda. “All children are musical and kids’ natural fascination with singing and dancing is an amazing tool that has not been fully utilized.” Until now.

Jeremy Zmuda was born into a family of children’s educators in Long Beach, Indiana where he began his love affair with Hendrix, cruising to public radio, and the guitar. He cut his teeth at Chicago’s Columbia College, developing his taste for Jazz guitar. In 1993, he was awarded a scholarship to Berklee College of Music in Boston where he graduated with honors in Jazz performance and music education. After accepting a coveted teaching position at Berklee College of Music and performing in Boston for several years, he decided to make the move to NYC in 2004. Immediately his musical world “grew beyond his imagination.”

At this time, Jeremy began developing music for early childhood education programs including The Maple Street School in Brooklyn, the Roosevelt Island Nursery School, his own theme based music camps in Brooklyn, and as a consultant for Sesame Street. Additionally, he created an original music program for young children and their parents entitled ‘Music Time Kids’ to enhance children’s inherent musical abilities. Though Jeremy continued to perform and write music for adults including earning the prestigious grand prize award in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest for his composition, “On Standby,” he continued to be drawn to writing and performing music for children. Inspired by the many children that he worked with through preschool programs and privately, he collaborated with Clare Manchon (Clare and The Reasons) to create the critically acclaimed album, Songs in the Key of New York. This thoughtful CD met with rave reviews both for the music and the lyrics. It successfully celebrates the five boroughs in a “cool, jazzy poise” that also gives the kids of NYC a way to talk, learn and sing about their environment. The result is a catchy, melodious and original collection that speaks to kids and adults alike.

From there, Jeremy could no longer deny his gift for creating a magical musical experience that secretly teaches kids how to negotiate their environment through singing and dancing. He teamed up with early childhood specialist Lizzie Bicknell to form Jeremy Plays Guitar and has collaborated with musicians from diverse musical roots to create his newest album, Use Your Words, focusing on giving children language and strategies to navigate the everyday challenges of childhood in today’s world.